December 2008 Blog Posts (51)


Wow, I can't believe I missed this one. Someone has been working (HARD) on an Arduino based quad.

Their source was put up on the 21st of December

Looks like a great start. I need to get my planes finished so that I can build one of these too!

Added by Venom57 on December 31, 2008 at 8:30pm — 3 Comments

3D Robotics
Review: World's first toy autopilot

WowWee's BladeStar indoor flying machine is advertised as the first toy with an autopilot. From its description: "The exclusive Autopilot Mode with sensor-based navigation enables it to glide through the air, avoiding ceilings and flying away from… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on December 30, 2008 at 1:00pm — 2 Comments

VicaCopter 3.0 4 U

2 months after VicaCopter 2.0, it's VicaCopter 3.0. The autopilot has been moved to quad rotors. All control is done by VicaCopter. Just get 4 motors, 4 ESC's, 4 propellers, & fly. The quad rotor is the cheapest & easiest route to the air.

A UAV programming language has replaced the table of waypoints to enable more complicated maneuvers. Automated takeoffs & landings, curved paths, pirouettes, turning towards a point are supported.

Go to… Continue

Added by Jack Crossfire on December 29, 2008 at 5:00pm — 1 Comment

Project multirotor starting up.

I'm gathering information about multirotor controls and different type of ready products on www

Interesting web site's on this project

And couple forums

And this ArduPilotPro sound good for this project

If somebody find good website for this project i'm more than… Continue

Added by Ari-Pekka Huttu on December 29, 2008 at 11:00am — 17 Comments

3D Robotics
ArduPilot code now in beta!

Jordi's finished the first beta of ArduPilot, in anticipation of the board's commercial release. Changes and improvements include:

  • The code is now hosted in a proper code repository (Google Code) for version control and to allow others to contribute to the project. You can find it here.
  • RTL (return to launch) and waypoint modes are user selectable
  • Waypoints…

Added by Chris Anderson on December 29, 2008 at 8:37am — 14 Comments

3D Robotics
Test flying an EasyStar with EasyGlider wings

After testing the new 4-channel EasyGlider Pro and finding it a great flier but without as much internal space as our beloved 3-channel EasyStar, people suggested I just modify some EasyGlider wings (which have ailerons) and use them on the EasyStar.

So I did that. It was a pretty easy mod--you just have to carve off a little foam from the Easy Glider wings and thread a aileron… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on December 29, 2008 at 12:00am — No Comments

My Initial UAV Project Proposal

Hello all,

This is my debut to the site and I will try to continue to post throughout the development of my project. I am a senior in Computer Engineering and for my senior design I have chosen to make a fully autonomous aircraft. I have no experience in flying rc airplanes but I just have extreme interest in airplanes. I have three other team mates (1 computer engineer, and 2 electrical engineers). For the last month, I have been researching rc aircrafts and devices that I will need… Continue

Added by Jeremy on December 28, 2008 at 10:00pm — 8 Comments

A Loaded Question (I think)

I am curious to know how members of this community got to where you are with regard to knowledge of controllers and the associated programming. I have been reading this site for weeks, have gone through much of the Paparazzi site and am getting overwhelmed with just where to begin to learn; or more precisely, where to go from here. It's all a little haphazard and disjointed. I even downloaded the Basic Stamp training materials and worked through the exercises (mentally, at least).

I… Continue

Added by Paul Marsh on December 27, 2008 at 7:41pm — 12 Comments

Maiden flight of "The Kodel": autopilot-to-be

Today my autopilot hardware took the sky for the first time. Although this maiden flight was successful, its only a first step.

The primary goal of the test was to see if the autopilot failsafe mechanisms operated fine:

- no lockup on division by zero

- instant regain of control after brown-out causing reboot

- no lock on uncaught interrupts

- handover to servo failsafe positions on RC reception lost

- instant… Continue

Added by Koen Delvaux on December 27, 2008 at 10:06am — 5 Comments

SkySailor - 27 hours autonomous flight

I came across a nice project for those interested using some solar power for their UAV. It appears that this relatively small plane was able to fly autonomously for more than 27 hours over 874 km (in big circle, but still...).…


Added by fom on December 26, 2008 at 5:34pm — 2 Comments

3D Robotics
Arduino debugging tips

If you're trying to upload code with Arduino and you get an error message that looks something like this:

"Problem uploading code.....

avrdude: stk500_getsync(): not in sync: resp=0x78

avrdude: stk500_disable(): protocol error, expect=0x14, resp=0x78"

(or any other error report when uploading…


Added by Chris Anderson on December 26, 2008 at 4:00pm — 108 Comments

3D Robotics
New version of Fritzing available

The cool all-in-one free Arduino prototyping software has been updated, with new parts and better stability. Download it here.

Added by Chris Anderson on December 25, 2008 at 2:52pm — 2 Comments

Wondering about adding altitude and attitude sensors

With some simple sensors we could detect the pitch and altitude to make better decisions about altitude changes and what to do with them. I'm thinking 2 sensors from sparkfun would do the trick.

Added by Venom57 on December 25, 2008 at 7:38am — 7 Comments

3D Robotics
Another Arduino-based helicopter autopilot

This guy built a "heli shield" for an Arduino dev board. Code is available… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on December 24, 2008 at 10:01pm — 2 Comments

3D Robotics
Original DIY Drones UAV projects

These are projects from 2007 and early 2008 that were a lot of fun to do and are still worth checking out for UAV ideas. There is also a PDF/poster that shows how they compare to military and commercial drones.

GeoCrawler 1 (Based on a LEGO Mindstorms autopilot)…


Added by Chris Anderson on December 24, 2008 at 3:00pm — No Comments

3D Robotics
New Sparkfun autonomous vehicle competition

Navigate autonomously around the Sparkfun building in Boulder, CO, by ground or air. Event is on April 15th. Shortest time wins. $300 first prize. We can win this!…


Added by Chris Anderson on December 23, 2008 at 7:48pm — 3 Comments

Reading PWM from a receiver

Hey all.

I know this subject has been covered in many ways, but I am hoping that someone can assist me. I hope someone can have the patience to answer a few of my VERY NEWB questions.

What I am trying to do is to send PWM to an arduino on an air vehicle which will then send the appropriate servo controls. Simple enough some may say, but I am in a bind since I just cannot get my head wrapped around this and frankly, I think my research has gotten me confused.

My… Continue

Added by James Holbrook on December 23, 2008 at 12:30pm — 17 Comments

3D Robotics
Nice writeup on DIY Drones on the Ning blog

Sweet recognition! Check out what the company that hosts us and about 700,000 other social networks thinks about DIY Drones here.

Added by Chris Anderson on December 22, 2008 at 3:18pm — 1 Comment

Interesting 900MHz radio

Take a look at Click on OEM Radio Modules and check out the AW900mSPI.

The AW900m is a 900MHz digital radio with lots of range and throughput - 1.54Mbps radio channel with 900-1100kbps delivered. SPI/UART version will retail for $129 per card. These look really good - I should have a couple of modules shortly and will report on performance. The UART… Continue

Added by Howard Gordon on December 22, 2008 at 2:30pm — No Comments

3D Robotics
How to program the Attiny on ArduPilot

To load the failsafe firmware on ArduPilot's Attiny chip, you need to do the following.

1) You'll need an ICSP AVR programmer. We recommend AVRSIP2. Connect the cable to the correct ICSP port on your board, as… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on December 22, 2008 at 12:30pm — 76 Comments

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